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Scottsdale cabbie arrested on DNA evidence from 2016 sex assault case

Abbas Shemisawi mugshot (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photo)

PHOENIX — An arrest was made in a three-year-old sexual assault case that was once closed as inactive but reopened in November.

Abbas Shemisawi was arrested on Tuesday after a crime lab matched Shemisawi’s DNA to a profile found in the victim’s dress and underwear.

According to authorities, the incident occurred in August 2016 when at the end of a night of drinking in Scottsdale, the victim woke up on a couch in an apartment she had never been in before.

Police were called to the scene by the tenant of the apartment – a male – who said he had forgotten to lock his apartment door the night before.

The victim said that she had no recollection of how she got there and later realized that she was no longer wearing underwear.

Two days later, investigators swabbed the tenant of the apartment for DNA samples after the victim feared that she was raped or had become pregnant on the night she woke up there.

After the results from the apartment tenant’s DNA swab were determined not a match from semen samples on the victims dress, the case was closed.

That is until November 2018 when after the semen from the victim’s dress was uploaded into a database, was found to be a match with Shemisawi from an incident in April 2017 in the same area.

Shemisawi is a cab driver who works weekends in the Scottsdale area.

On the night of the original sexual assault, the victim lost track time and her surroundings between when she was dropped off from an Uber to when she expected to meet with friends, friends she never found that night.

Phone tracking devices showed that she was circling the area of the apartment for five unaccounted hours.

Although Shemisawi said he had never seen, known or had sex with the victim, officers made the arrest and requested he be held on a $100,000 bond.

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